Art, Craft and Design


Our well-established Art Department is a vibrant part of St Mary’s Catholic High School. We pride ourselves on making Art meaningful, enjoyable and accessible to all students.

Art lessons are creative, practical and engaging. The schemes of work are designed to complement the students’ practical work and independent learning, in order to encourage creative thinking, self-expression, and problem solving. We recognise the importance of adopting a pupil centred approach to teaching and learning and we ensure that skills learnt in Art and Design are transferable across other curriculum areas.

Extra-curricular activities and visits:

The Art department runs regular Art clubs at lunchtimes and after-school, competitions and exhibits children’s artwork at every opportunity in school or in the wider community. Assessment:
 Students are assessed in a wide variety of media and techniques. Continuous assessment is used to level pupils throughout the course. Students are set targets throughout each topic and given every opportunity to improve their skills.


The Art department is based in one fully equip room, with a wide variety of resources to promote learning.

Year 7 course:

In year 7 students learn to analyse and evaluate the work of a range of artists in written and visual forms. They work through a series of topics which include introduction to new media and techniques. Students will gain skills in coloured pencil, watercolour painting, pen, ink and pastel work. They complete a series of home learning projects that support and extend the themes covered in lessons.

Year 8 course:

In year 8 students start to build on the initial skills taught in year 7. They will revisit and practice certain media and techniques before learning new skills. Students continue to evaluate the work of artists and gain a wider understanding of cultural art. They will start to experiment in mixed media collage. Home learning projects focus on both 2D and 3D techniques.

Year 9 course:

By the end of Key Stage 3 students are encouraged to work in ways that will prepare them for the rigour of GCSE coursework. Working in a style in keeping with coursework also gives students a clear idea of whether they want to choose Art as one of their options. They continue to develop skills in a variety of media and techniques and study the work of artists, but a lot more emphasis is placed on research and planning for final designs.

Year 10 & Year 11 course: G.C.S.E. Art and Design

Syllabus AQA 'Art, Craft and Design'.

Unit 1: Coursework 60% Students complete one sustained topic and then other additional studies. The coursework must fulfill four assessment objectives, including links with artists, experimentation in a variety of media, development of ideas and personal response.

Unit 2: Externally set exam 40% Students complete a preparatory sketchbook covering the same assessment objectives as Unit 1 over several weeks and then a timed piece of work in a 10 hours.